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You are so much more than your art!

You are so much more than your art!

more than your art

What on earth do I mean by “you are so much more than your art”?  

There’s a family story that my mother, a watercolor artist hanging with her Big Sur, bohemian crowd (think Man Ray, and the insolent Henry Miller), declared to the gaggle of male artists in her circle, after my birth, that no art could compare to the creation of a child. 

Besides the emotional burden of having to carry her creative outlet, which I’ve long ago released, I re-tell this story here to say: this is not what I mean. 

For my mother, being an artist (which she was in so many respects it’s dizzying) was a zero-sum game, which she stacked up against being a parent.  

And her art lost. (In many ways, her parenting also lost…but that’s another story…) 

Your art and you: the optimal relationship 

 When you immerse yourself in making art, nothing is more fulfilling.  

If you experience “flow” (an expanded state of being where your proprioceptive sense of “I” disappears and the art making becomes everything), that’s likely to increase the internal experience that you are your art. 

And if, on top of that, people tell you how beautiful, amazing, and awesome (three shop-worn adjectives I’d like to toss in the trash) your work is, then being equated with your art becomes too yummy to pull away from. 

And yet, that is exactly what I’m going to ask you to consider doing. 

Extract yourself from your art.  

Just for a moment, right now.  

Take a breath, and write an answer to my following two questions. 

(On what? A Digital note? Some paper beside you? You decide, only, please hang in with me here and do it right now before distraction—or duties—step in!)  

Why write?  

Because writing engages your brain, and your subconscious, in ways that can reveal new information to you, about you. 

And, as odd as it may seem, you and I are heading straight into your art career.  


1. Who are you without your art? 

2. If you couldn’t do the specific art you do, what might take its place? 


You can scroll down and give me your answers below here on this page. 

Or hang onto your answers for a few days because… 

I’ll be back on Friday to consider what an optimal relationship with your art might look like. Or feel like. Or dance like… 

Remember, revealing the true spirit of your work…is the work,  

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.

Your Truth. Your Power. Your Word. Claim it! 

P.S. When you respond to my two questions here, I’ll take that as permission to share your response with the other artists in my circle—unless you directly ask me not to.  

You are so much more than your art!

What’s Your Why?

This week has been challenging for my why, so I got to thinking about your why.

Why do we do what we do?

Why do you?

Why do I?

I sat at my kitchen table playing solitaire (clears my mind!) and thought about how I used to think our why was baked into our personality, like brown eyes. Once you understood your why (itself a daunting task), it wouldn’t change.

Now I’m questioning that premise because I’m questioning my why, which has stood the test of several decades.

Why, oh, why am I questioning my why?

Because, as I’m questioning everything I do professionally, my why I’ve done what I’ve done, and what I’ll do next, is sliding under an intense, internal microscope.

Maybe this happens to you if you shift from one medium to another. Or from one project to another. Perhaps why you are an artist at all has nuances when it comes to why you select one project over another, one tool over another, one idea over another.

Maybe our whys shift during times of major life transitions; maybe some parts of our why stay the same, while other parts try on new outfits.

For me, right now, that I find artists to be essential, humanity shape-shifters, has not changed. Because you live the creative life for yourself, it affirms for others the substance of creative expression. And so, who knows, maybe they too can have access to their Creative Self.

I find this outcome of being an artist irresistible. And every cell in my body wants to help you learn to articulate your why so the people who love your work grow even more connected to it.

This brings me back to my why.

Which I can’t articulate just yet because I haven’t figured out what’s happening next in my online, artist-focused life.

I think I’ll start with asking myself why I’m needing to change at all?

Maybe that’ll open the gates.

I’ll let you know once I do.

Meanwhile, don’t hold back. Come tell me why you do what you do.

As always, revealing the true spirit of your work…is the work,
especially in challenging times,

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.




Your Truth. Your Power. Your Word. Claim it!

P.S. If you want the best crash course in writing (or updating!) your artist statement, I wrote Writing the Artist Statement: Revealing the True Spirit of Your Work  specifically for anyone who finds writing about themselves a chore. Revealing the true spirit of your work helps you deeply honor what you do, and in that sense is a joy.

Your book was a lifesaver! The writing exercises took away my fear and made a difference not just in my writing, but also in my work. I would have been lost and frustrated without it. 

~ Lauren Simon ceramic artist

You are so much more than your art!

What About That Small Grain of Sand in Your Artist’s Shoe?

I know, your artist-career palette is brimming over.

There are sales to consider. How to be, and stay, connected to collectors. Where to show your work. The website updates that haven’t been dealt with. The studio that needs an overhaul.

And goodness only knows, that’s just the career side of your life.

So here I come and yammer on about that small grain of sand in your artist’s shoe: artist statements.

I can only imagine that taking five minutes out of your day feels like five years.

But let me tell how much I’ve learned from those of you who took 5 minutes and completed my easy-peasy survey.

I’ve learned that some of you want to:

  • Know more about what collectors need from you
  • Feel more confident writing about your work
  • Understand why you do what you do! (Seems as if you have the what you do, and how you do it, under wraps.)
  • Identify the true spirit of your work

The irony here is that one of the mainstays of any artist’s careers are the collectors. And when you know what to write for them to become, and stay, engaged with you, that grain of sand in your shoe becomes a sun-warmed beach with aqua waters.

What do you want at this point in your art career? Now’s the time.

Come tell me what will help you get where you want to go!

Remember, revealing the true spirit of your work…is the work,

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.




Your Truth. Your Power. Your Word. Claim it!

P.S. I even give you a space in the survey to tell me anything you’d like me to know about you, your art, and your art career.

P.S.S. You have no idea about all the areas of an art career I can weave into an artist statement workshop. All I need to know is what do you need. So, come tell me!

You are so much more than your art!

In gratitude…and pretty please would you…

I’m taking  a breather after the mad rush of my Holiday Bonus, which I paired with a purchase of my book, Writing the Artist Statement: Revealing the True Spirit of Your Work.

It was a roaring success and I want to thank everyone who jumped in!

Now, my inner headlights are scanning the art career horizon for how I can best support your art career right now.

I have a couple of ideas, but what I really need is to hear from you about what you really, really need.

So, I’m crafting a short survey with questions aimed at just this: how to best support you and your art career.

If you have one or more questions you would like me to ask in this survey, please either 1)  send me an email  or 2) post a comment here on my Reflections Blog.

Remember, revealing the true spirit of your work…is the work,
even in challenging times,

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.




Your Truth. Your Power. Your Word. Claim it!

P.S. One area I’m thinking about is mindset/stumbling blocks to either your creativity, your production ability, or the business side of your career.

Another is a hands-on workshop to write your Artist Statement, and/or Art Statements for individual collections/installations/or a series.

What do you think?

You are so much more than your art!

So, How Do You Get Personal, Be Vulnerable, Be Real? Part 2

Ariane Goodwin, Ph.D.
An Educator, Editor, Writer, and Art Career Coach
who believes artists change the world!

Part 2: Getting Personal, Being Real

Getting personal and being real is really pretty simple when you write about you and your art.

Sometimes, it’s helpful to clear out the writing weeds… so…

First, what it’s not:
It’s not the therapy-style of baring-your-soul.

It’s not the I-love-you-and-need-to-tell-you-everything hashtag.

It’s not the because-I-need-love-I’ll-cut-open-a-vein-for-you hashtag.

Or winging it because you’re going for the informal look.

In an artist statement, getting personal and being real is limited; it’s focus is on your relationship to your art where your feelings, preferences, and vision can offer a potential collector what I call a “peek behind the canvas (or potting wheel, or marble, or cello…).”

The key here is “a peek.” You don’t need much in an artist statement that is only three paragraphs long (best case scenario), or even one page long (not the most desirable, but can work). And your reader only needs enough to feel as if you, like them, are real.

Sometimes it’s as simple as connecting a daily task to what you do:

Waking up before sunrise, rolling out of bed, one of the first imagines to rise in my consciousness is where I left off last night with my newest piece, Sky High.

That’s the spirit of how you want to connect.

There’s also a couple of writing techniques that, by their nature, open the door to getting personal and being real.

The first is the all-important I: first person. 
This one can get tricky, especially if you are harboring obvious or hidden places where you lack confidence in your work.

Speaking in the first person, especially when you are writing, is saying: this is me. I stand in my truth wholly, fully, completely.

And sometimes, for some artists, first person be unnerving—anything from a slight discomfort to downright panic. It’s the most vulnerable position you can take.

And it’s essential you do.

Because, if you use third person, your statement sounds like a critic wrote it, and you are not a critic. Or it sounds as if an academic wrote it, but you are the artist (even if you also happen to be an academic).

It’s your work, not their work. So, owning it is actually the first step.

The second technique is specificity.

When you use generalities or overworn language, you immediately become no one (or everyone). Even if your art is fully original, with a well-developed fingerprint, if the language you use in your artist statement contradicts that, you immediately create dissonance in the mind of your potential collector.

Compare this:

As I shape the clay, I’m drawn into the pot as if I’m in a dream.

With this:

As the wet clay cools my palm, the emerging pot draws me into a rhythmic dream where the smell of clean earth rises ‘round me.

With word specificity, you can capture the same uniqueness that your art exudes.

That’s it.

You can interweave these three simple elements—a peek behind the curtain, first person, and specificity—with the core elements of your artist statement—the why, how, and why of your relationship to your art—and draw people even closer to the work that you love to make.

Remember, revealing the true spirit of your work…is the work,
even in challenging times,

Ariane Goodwin Writing The Artist Statement. Writing and Editing relief for the Creative Entrepreneur.




Your truth. Your power. Your words. Claim it!

P.S. Want the whole system? And my Holiday Bonus10 Tips for a Perfect Artist Statement Presentation?

P.S. Remember, just for the holidays, I’m offering a HUGE Holiday Bonus when you buy my book, Writing The Artist Statement: Revealing the True Spirit of Your Work.

Ready for more? Click here!

Buy my book by the January 14th deadline:

Writing The Artist Statement:
Revealing The True Spirit Of Your Work
Ariane Goodwin, Ph.D.

The first & only complete resource book that works for visual artists at all levels: beginning / mid-career / advanced

My artistic partner is dyslexic, with a real writing phobia. Your book is a fantastic teaching air. The floodgates have opened and made him realize that he can write. What a godsend! ~J. Brett, London, UK

  • Overcome writing blocks
  • Avoid 7 blunders that tag you as an amateur
  • Make your statement engaging and compelling
  • Learn why galleries & collectors love good ones (even if you don’t)
  • Use the power of sensory connection to help people remember you
  • And get the Holiday Bonus: 10 Tips for a Perfect Artist Statement Presentation

Writing your statement has never been so easy! And that’s a promise…

  • P.S.S. If you already have my book, but still want 10 Tips for a Perfect Artist Statement Presentation, send me an email:

Revealing what, how and why you do your art does not dismantle either the beauty or mystery of it. Quite the opposite. Your effort to reach out invites others to participate in the mystery and to share the beauty.